For several years as I was growing up our family went camping on weekends in the summer. There are so many fabulous memories from that time – the packing and unloading of camping gear, sleeping in the tent, meals cooked outdoors and tasting better than they ever did at home. Family time, hiking, swimming, fishing, canoeing. I realize more and more just what a gift that time was.
Many Labor Day weekends were spent at a camp ground, and sometimes that was the last camp out for that season, although there were a few fall camp outs, too. But Labor Day seemed to signal the end of summer and the beginning of fall… just as it does to so many of us even now.
Yesterday we spent several hours at our church picnic, hosted by a wonderful couple at their farm in the country. I noticed that as the people began to leave, the young children were just hanging on to every moment, not wanting to tear away from the sand, the water, the campfire and the s’mores, the carefree fun of summer.
I so remember doing that very thing myself.
I took several photos at the picnic, but this one keeps calling to me. Yesterday evening I kept hearing in my mind the words to a song from Fiddler on the Roof, “Sunrise, Sunset”. The phrase I heard was “one season following another, laden with happiness and tears…” It’s a song sung by the parents of the bride, seeing her with the groom as they exchange vows, and wondering how these children could have grown. Where did the time go?
Where did the summer go?
The seasons move, we live and have our being within those seasons, we change, we grow, we age. We see our children grow into adults, putting away the toys of their youth in exchange for more ‘grown up’ things. Yet deep within us all is that little kid that wants to be carefree, playful, not have a care in the world. How do we honor that need to re-create in this day and age?
I see this canoe pulled to shore, the many footprints created by little and not-so-little feet, the cute blue plastic shovel that created numerous castles in that sand…and I want to remember. I want to recall that for a few hours, seemingly suspended in time, we played on that shore, and paddled in that canoe on still waters. We refreshed our souls with the fellowship of people we have known for years, creating memories, building relationships.
We have ended one season filled with fun and happiness, greeting a new one filled with promise.
(This post is part of the Find Your Eye Course assignment called “Intuitive Photojournaling”. We were asked to choose an image and write what comes to mind. This was challenging, but it is also something I really enjoy doing.)